Bolder is better.
If you were to do a quick scroll through social media, street-style shots, or runway stills, you could undoubtedly conclude that minimalism is having a moment. For some, this era in fashion is a welcome change as the constant pressure to keep up with what’s “trending” can be unsustainable emotionally, financially, and for the planet. But that doesn’t mean the movement toward utilitarism has eradicated all maximalist trends. In fact, in almost direct opposition to the cultural push to embrace a curated capsule wardrobe, we’ve seen one anti-minimal accessories trend dominate the zeitgeist: maximalist shoes. For the dialed-in fashion crowd, it’s no surprise that over-the-top footwear has gone viral as the “quiet luxury” movement has taken off. It may seem like an oxymoron, but the most stylish people know style is all about balance—it’s the ability to mix high and low, minimalism and maximalism, and pair staples with statement items. Yes, it’s imperative to curate an arsenal of staples, but it’s also vital to have styling tricks to keep said items from feeling stale. Shoes happen to be the easiest solution to styling qualms. Despite the larger cultural push towards pragmatism, it’s no wonder we’ve seen flamboyant footwear dominate S/S 24 and F/W 22 collections. These larger-than-life styles offer a bit of noise in an otherwise quiet time. For some, this trend is music to their ears, but if you’re not sold on this tune just yet, you’ll want to keep reading. We’ve identified the four biggest fall shoe trends that walk on the more eclectic side; plus, we shopped out the 32 best maximalist shoes at every price point. Whether you identify as a maximalist to your core or are just curious about how to have more fun with your fall staples, there’s something ahead for everyone.
If there’s one shoe trend that can keep you from getting cold feet (both literally and figuratively) about embracing a dose of maximalism this fall, it’s faux fur shoes. We saw the style come in everything from fuzzy pumps at Stella McCartney and Givenchy to shearling-covered sandals at Sportmax and Gucci. The versatility alone in silhouttes are available makes them one of the more pragmatic statement items one can purchase for fall. But should that not sell you, keep scrolling to let the shoes do the talking for themselves.
You’ll never find a more cozy pair of pumps.
The addition of a faux-fur shearling on the footbed of these Zara wedges will ensure they’re not only comfortable but transition well into the fall.
Just when you thought ballet flats couldn’t be more comfortable, Tod’s created this shearling pair.
Ditch your childhood plushy for these posh pumps.
Pro tip: opt for a classic style with faux fur to ensure they match your staples seamlessly.
Leave it to Khaite to make the coolest shearling sandals of the season.
It doesn’t get more luxurious than these faux-fur trim flats.
It’s giving Max Mara vibes but for less.
For those who prefer minimalism, finding a shoe trend that allows one to not step too far out of their comfort zone can seem impossible… until now. Across F/W 23 runways, we saw designers perfectly walk the fine line between functionality and frivolity through the embrace of sculptural shoes. What makes this trend alluring is that classic silhouttes are given a modern twist—e.g., a black pump at Ferragamo featured a razor-sharp pointed toe. While at Del Core and Dries Van Noten, mules and heels featured slightly curved heels. And then, at Prada, pointed ballet flats and kitten heels had 3D triangle appliqués. Though each iteration of this trend varied, each used sculptural elements to create shoes that felt futuristic in nature without being too unapproachable.
The curved heel on these shoes would look so good peeking out of a pair of tailored trousers.
Nod to the trend by opting for a pair of shoes with sharp angles.
These shoes deserve a spot in the contemporary art museum.
The slanted stiletto on these pumps is everything.
You’ll want to zoom in to see the heels on these boots.
Everything about these pumps is cool—from the wavy upper line to the sculptural heel.
Meet your new favorite pair of boots.
The bean sculpture has nothing on these mules.
Let’s be honest: pulling off statement accessories takes a great deal of work. But if you’re the type of person who’s not afraid of putting in a little extra styling labor, then footwear with hardware is right up your alley. With S/S 23 and F/W 23 collections, we saw designers create shoes that looked like they had taken a trip to the hardware store to add various embellishments. For example, at Tory Burch’s fall show, we saw riding boots adorned with chunky chains and kitten heels pierced with sculptural metal hoops. While at Lanvin and Stella McCartney, pumps were covered in studs. And then, there were A.W.A.K.E Mode’s S/S 23 and F/W 23 collections, which featured footwear adorned with gold and silver glinting studs. No matter the types of embellishments used, it’s clear that designers were all embracing the perspective that “more is more,” at least in regard to footwear.
Why pick between silver and gold when you can have both?
Style these with your favorite pair of jeans and a moto jacket for a sultry date-night ensemble.
The chunky chain paired with the studs makes these loafers the perfect purchase to embody this trend to the max.
The hardware on these slingbacks is stunning.
These flats embody the pop-punk fashion aesthetic perfectly.
These boots are made for walking.
Even the minimalists can get behind this trend.
Clogs have never been edgier.
Lastly, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the trend that embodies maximalist footwear to the fullest: surrealism. For a few seasons now, we’ve seen designers inject touches of surrealism into their collections—shoes were not immune to this trend. At Off-White’s S/S 23 show, shoes featured heels that mimicked the appearance of a slinky. While at Loewe, heels featured both life-like and real ballon appliqués. But it wasn’t just earlier seasons that brought a touch of whimsy to their accessories, as we saw JW Anderson’s fall collection feature pointed pumps with heels in the form of the brand’s initials. And then, there was Puppets and Puppets F/W 23 show, in which pumps were adorned with resin flowers and cracked eggs. Sure, some of these shoes are the antithesis of pragmatic, but that’s the point. With so much of the cultural conversation being dominated by the push towards all things “low-key,” it’s fun to have something exist nearly for the sake of fashion. Maximalist shoes may not be for everyone, but you better believe they’re worth talking about, too.
Put some spring in your step this fall.
New Yorkers, apply here.
Watch collectors will get a kick out of the timepiece-inspired heel on these ankle boots.
You can’t roundup surrealist shoes without including Loewe’s iconic nail polish mules.
The perfect sandals to pack for a last-minute beach getaway.
It’s happy hour somewhere.
Whimsical doesn’t even begin to describe these mules.
BRB, we will be dreaming of these pumps indefinitely.